9 Things to Do In Zürich
This weekend I got the opportunity to visit Zürich – a city in all honesty – I didn’t know that much about. In my pre-trip research phase I couldn’t find a lot of information online that was relevant to me. Being a 20-something who lives in central London I’m quite spoilt for culture, bars, restaurants and activities so when I do visit different cities I try and look for the hidden gems. Not wanting to spend too much money (which can be easily done in Zürich) was also a big factor in my visit considering that Zürich is a very expensive city. My flights were relatively cheap at £60 return (search here for flights) I thought it would be a good idea to document what I got up to and give you my perspective of the city and if you do ever fancy visiting you can try these things out too.
1. Lake Zurich
First of all the Lake is stunning, the water is clear and you can see the alps in the background, it’s definitely one of the most beautiful sights I’ve seen. Me and my friend Tori really wanted to explore the Lake on a boat ride, we’d seen people on their own speedboats or pedal boats but these were around 30 CHF (£20) for an hour. We noticed that there were lots of passenger boats on the lake and found out that they’re actually a part of the public transport system – however they also offer ’round trip’ experiences, the short round trip is 1 hour and a half and the long round trip is 3 hours. We opted for the short round trip for 8.60 CHF (around £6) and it was awesome. You get to see the mixture of houses around the lake and get a little bit closer to the alps. For that price you really can’t go wrong.
You can get tickets from the dock at the top of the Lake near the Bellevue tram stop.
I’d been recommended by a lot of different people to visit this restaurant. It is known internationally for being the oldest continuously open vegetarian restaurant in the World. I’m not a vegetarian but I love vegetarian meals and the food here was incredible. We had the buffet style option where you pay for the weight of your food, my meal and drink cost around 26 CHF (£18). This does seem a bit expensive but for the quality and the service I think it’s totally reasonable. They do a mixture of vegetarian curries, pasta dishes, salads and vegetarian ‘meat’. If you do go to Zürich I highly recommend Hiltl.
Hiltl – Sihlstrasse 28, 8001 Zürich, Switzerland
3. Trois Pommes
Although I didn’t make any purchases whilst in Zürich (I could get more for my money back here in the UK) I was interested in their offerings in terms of high end/luxury fashion. Trois Pommes had offerings such as Saint Laurent, Givenchy, Balmain and Visvim. It has a separate mens and women’s store right in the heart of the shopping area. The mens had 2 floors and everything was beautifully presented and the staff were really friendly (not often the case at high end stores here in the UK!).
Trois Pommes The Store Men, Bahnhofstrasse 12, 8001
4. Lily’s Cafe
People on my snapchat gave me a lot of stick for having Asian food here in Switzerland but it’s my favourite cuisine so of-course I want to see how the Swiss do it. Lilys was recommended to my friend and I really wanted to try it – I had some time to kill one day so I went on my own I loved the interior, really industrial and the spiral staircase was awesome (here). The menu is a mixture of Thai and Indian food – I ordered the Thai green curry, perfumed rice and a side of prawn wontons. It was superb and you got a lot of food for your money with a Swiss coca cola my bill came to around 30 CHF (£20). There are a few different versions of Lily’s around Zurich so definitely check one out if you have time.
Lily’s Factory, Sihlfeldstrasse 58, 8003
5. Getting Lost
One thing that me and Tori did quite often was get lost. Getting lost on purpose in a new city is one of my favourite things to do, it’s completely free and you never know what you’ll find. Turn off your maps and just go with your gut instinct. We stumbled upon some beautiful scenes, found amazing restaurants or even places we’d been recommended to go to. It also gives you a sense of direction and lets you piece the city together in your own mind. Zurich is perfect for this, especially along the lake – you’ll find parks, incredible buildings and bars all in unexpected places.
‘Zeughaus’ means aresnal storehouse, which is exactly what this restaurant used to be. Transformed into an eatery this restaurant is a tourist hotspot which might not be your cup of tea but I actually really enjoyed myself, offering an array of swiss german sausage and schnitzels the warm friendly environment and the hearty food make Zeughauskeller a great place for lunch or dinner. It’s also huge so you’re almost guaranteed to get a table.
Bahnhofstrasse 28A, 8001 Zürich
7. Ice Cream
Now I’m not sure if this only applies to the summer months – when I was there the weather was beautiful. If it is nice weather when you visit, take a walk alongside the lake (it goes on for ages!) there will be Ice cream stall after Ice cream stall, they’re all awesome, I had quite a few during my stay haha. The best one served gelato – It was called Gelati – I think. It’s the one in the picture and what they do is provide you with a large cone, two scoops of gelato and a tiny ‘taster’ scoop on the top which I thought was a brilliant idea. The cone was also large enough to turn into a form of bowl so you can use a spoon to eat it. So get your ice cream, sit by the lake and enjoy the view.
8. Swiss Fondue
Me and Tori had a ‘Swiss Sunday’ where we did more touristy activities and went on a mission to find fondue. We conquered the mission and found a great place called Swiss Chuchi. We’d been ‘getting lost’ a couple of days before and noticed a lot of fondue restaurants in the old town. We went back there and had a wander around, eventually Swiss Chuchi caught our eye due to the bubbling pots of cheese and the melting raclette. We’d never ordered fondue before but the waiter was very helpful and even showed us that you can eat the crispy cheese at the end haha. We got bread, potatoes and meat to dip into our 4 cheese fondue and it was delicious.
Rosengasse 10, Zurich 8001, Switzerland
The main event of our ‘Swiss day’ was to go up Uetliberg mountain – you can get a train straight there from the main train station (Zürich HB), I had no idea that this amazing look out tower was on top of the mountain and I was thrilled when I saw it, I love the architecture and the views from the top are unbelievable. However climbing to the top took a lot of courage because I think I’m afraid of heights haha. Just don’t look down and remember that if a child can do it then so can you. Its 2 CHF to go up the tower but its definitely worth it.
So there you have it – my 9 things to do in Zürich, we did a lot like have drinks in Frau Gerold’s Garden, get pizza in Rosso’s and tried a burger joint called Holy Cow which will all be featured in my vlog over on my YouTube channel so make sure you’re subscribed here. Thank you for stopping by and do let me know if you’ve visited any of these places before or if you’re planning on going to Zürich. Don’t hesitate to ask me any questions you have and I want to say a big thank you to everyone I met over there and to my friend Tori for having me.